How to Build a Rocket Stove Oven

How to Build a Rocket Stove Oven

If you’re looking for an efficient and eco-friendly way to cook your meals while enjoying the great outdoors, building a rocket stove oven might be the perfect solution. A rocket stove oven is a compact, portable stove that uses minimal fuel and produces very little smoke. In this article, we will guide you through the steps of building your own rocket stove oven.

Materials you will need:
– 55-gallon steel drum
– Angle grinder or metal saw
– Fire bricks
– Clay or cob mixture
– Sand
– Grate or mesh
– Insulating material (perlite or vermiculite)
– Pipe or chimney

Step 1: Prepare the drum
Using an angle grinder or metal saw, cut a large rectangular opening in the side of the steel drum, leaving a lip at the bottom to hold the fire bricks. This will serve as the combustion chamber.

Step 2: Create the combustion chamber
Place the fire bricks on the lip inside the drum, forming a rectangular shape. This will act as the base for your rocket stove oven.

Step 3: Construct the insulation layer
Mix the clay or cob with sand to create a thick, sticky mixture. Apply a layer of this mixture around the outside of the drum, covering the entire surface except for the opening. This insulation layer will help retain heat and prevent the outer surface from becoming too hot.

Step 4: Build the cooking surface
Place the grate or mesh on top of the fire bricks inside the drum. This will be the surface where you can cook your food.

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Step 5: Add insulation materials
Fill the space between the drum and the insulation layer with perlite or vermiculite, which are lightweight insulation materials. This will further enhance the stove’s efficiency and prevent heat loss.

Step 6: Create a chimney
Attach a metal pipe or chimney to the opening of the drum. This will help direct the smoke away from the cooking area.

Step 7: Test and adjust
Before using your rocket stove oven, it’s essential to test its functionality. Build a small fire and observe the flame and smoke patterns. Adjust the airflow by modifying the intake vent or chimney height to achieve optimal combustion.


1. How efficient is a rocket stove oven?
Rocket stove ovens are highly efficient, as they use minimal fuel and retain heat effectively.

2. Can I use any type of drum for building a rocket stove oven?
It is recommended to use a steel drum as it can withstand high temperatures.

3. What fuel can I use with a rocket stove oven?
Rocket stove ovens can burn various types of biomass, such as wood, twigs, and even agricultural waste.

4. Is it safe to cook on a rocket stove oven?
When used correctly, rocket stove ovens are safe for cooking. However, always exercise caution and keep an eye on the flames.

5. How long does it take to build a rocket stove oven?
Building a rocket stove oven can take a few hours, depending on your skill level and available materials.

6. Can I use a rocket stove oven indoors?
It is not recommended to use a rocket stove oven indoors, as it produces smoke and can be a fire hazard.

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7. How portable is a rocket stove oven?
Rocket stove ovens can be relatively portable, depending on their size and weight.

8. Can I use my rocket stove oven for baking?
Yes, with the right setup, you can use a rocket stove oven for baking bread, pizza, and more.

9. How do I clean a rocket stove oven?
After each use, remove the ash and debris from the combustion chamber and clean the cooking surface.

10. Can I build a rocket stove oven without prior experience?
While some basic DIY skills are helpful, building a rocket stove oven doesn’t require extensive experience.

11. Are rocket stove ovens suitable for camping trips?
Rocket stove ovens are ideal for camping, as they are portable and efficient.

12. How can I make my rocket stove oven more efficient?
To increase efficiency, ensure proper insulation, use dry fuel, and maintain good airflow by adjusting the intake vent and chimney height.

By following these steps and guidelines, you can enjoy a sustainable and efficient cooking experience with your homemade rocket stove oven.